This post was written by Alex Phillips, Co Founder of Saint Belford.
You want to be able to associate a specific area of your house as your temporary place of work. In an ideal world, this would be a separate room.
I understand that it’s not always possible, especially when you’re living in an apartment. When we lived in an apartment, we used half of the dining table as our desk.
If possible, try to avoid places like your bed or the couch where you would typically relax. Your brain associates certain objects and spaces with specific activities so using the same space to work and relax can create mixed signals for your brain making it difficult for you to work productively in that space because it is strongly associated with relaxation.
Pick a start time and finish time and stick to it. There’s nobody telling you to start or finish work. You don’t have a train to catch so it’s easy to get caught up with work and let your work hours bleed into your personal hours. Set an alarm to remind you that the work day is over and it’s time to log out.
If your phone is a distraction and there’s nobody telling you to get off your phone, put it in a different room when you’re working. It’s a lot easier for you to focus on work when your phone isn’t on the desk tempting you to pick it up every few minutes.
If the TV is a distraction, unplug it.
If Netflix is the killer, log out of it. By doing that, you’re making it harder for you to access it and therefore creating a barrier between you and your distraction.
Look up workouts you can do on YouTube or just search online workout programs. When we were travelling and didn’t have access to physical yoga studios, we used bsy.tv.
Take breaks to recharge and refuel. Go outside. Get some fresh air and sunlight. Have lunch outside.
Leverage tools like Facetime, Zoom, Skype, Messenger. When I started working from home, I felt so socially isolated because I’d gone from daily interactions without even trying to having to consciously fill up my social cup. So give your friends a call, FaceTime, use zoom to catch up with your coworkers.
Lastly, recognise that this is a big transition, so be patient and be kind to yourself. Nothing’s going to be perfect. Do the best you can with what you have.